Reims is the kind of mediocre team perfectly happy with scoring 1 goal and trying to defend that fragile advantage for the rest of the game. They do not wish for more and they have no determination whatsoever.
This is how we can explain the 7 consecutive draws recorded by Reims. Of course there are other factors adding to this “impressive performance”. One of them is coach’s Fournier sympathy for striker Charbonnier.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, Charbobnnier lacks the skills necessary for being a Ligue1 striker. He can only be useful when it comes to aerial balls from the wings (tall player). But this style of play (long balls) doesn’t suit Reims and they aren’t even good at it or practice it for that matter.
In Ligue1 there are about 40 long balls in the box per game and Reims’ average is 20 per game…
They are focusing more on central midfielders having attempts with through balls and on wingers trying to infiltrate the box. In these circumstances Fournier’s choice of using Charbonnier instead of Courtet is simply inexplicable to me.
Lacking offensive power is the main reason Reims are continuously losing points.
For Reims Ghisolfi will most probably be back from injury but winger Fortes is still suspended.
Although they won only 1-0, Toulouse impressed last round against Nice. This performance is even more praiseworthy as central defender Abdennour (maybe their best player) was out suspended. He will return now to add strength to an already solid defense (even if they play only with 3 defenders).
It will be impossible for Reims’ forward Charbonnier to find his way against Toulouse’s defense. Only by long range attempts and miracles will Reims be able to score.
Even if Toulouse are in a clear uptrend they do have a weakness. Danish forward Martin Braithwaite who, in my eyes, is a disappointment even if he netted 3 goals so far. He is constantly losing easy balls, his passes are way off and he is always late when teammates try to “activate” him. I really appreciated this guy while he was in Denmark playing for Esbjerg and I truly hope he will eventually accommodate at Toulouse and show what he is really capable of.
Toulouse have an undisputed striker in Isreali Ben Basat. He’s been injured for a couple of weeks, returned last round from injury and hopefully the international break provided him enough time to be fully fit. Ben Basat can be infinitely more dangerous than Braithwaite. It is not necessarily about scoring in itself, but there’s a constant presence always nagging defenders and pushing them to their limits.
If you ask me bookies have set the odds wrong. The +0.25 is on Toulouse’s side when instead it should be for Reims, for the weaker ones… Price on Toulouse +0.25 is 1.70 now and is definitely worth.